Princess Sakura
10 August 2017 @ 03:55 pm
 

BASIC INFO

NAME: Sakura (サクラ)
A.K.A.: Princess Sakura
Loving Priestess
CANON: Fire Emblem: Fates
(Revelations)
NATIONALITY: Hoshido
AGE: 15-16
GENDER: Female
SPECIES: Human

FIRST GLANCE

APPEARANCE: Link
HEIGHT: ~4'10" (147cm)
BUILD: Small
HAIR: Pink-red
EYES: Pink-red
DRESS: Traditional Japanese, shrine maiden, cute
SCENT: Floral, sweet
VOICE: JPN | ENG
JPN | ENG
DEMEANOR: Shy, timid, polite, gentle

慈しみの巫女
Shrine Maiden of Affection


PERSONALITY
The most obvious trait of Sakura’s is the fact that she’s very timid. She speaks quietly, politely, and with a stammer, even around her family and friends (though, she seems considerably more comfortable around them). The reason behind her timidness stems largely in part due to the events surrounding the kidnapping of her older sibling, Corrin. After Corrin was taken away, a young Sakura overheard a rumor amongst some of the servants saying Sakura had been the intended target. Feeling responsible for her sibling’s kidnapping which had wrecked her family with grief, she withdrew from others. Though these rumors were unsubstantiated, the impression had been made and the damage was done.

Furthermore, after the kidnapping, her siblings began to dedicate themselves to bringing Corrin back. When your older brothers and sister are leading entire armies in a war and putting their lives on the line, it's hard to compare when you're back at the castle even if you are leading first aid efforts. She has a massive inferiority complex that comes from comparing herself to her siblings and everyone around her. She admires people very much and holds herself to a high standard so it all feeds into her doubts and anxieties.

Disliking violence, Sakura went on to become a shrine maiden so she could heal people. She dedicates herself to healing others and it's noted in a few of her supports, especially her support with Jakob, that she pushes herself too hard and can work herself to the point of exhaustion. When told to rest, she refuses and claims she feels responsible for everyone who is hurt in the war. This is probably alluding to the fact that, as the princess of one of the key warring nations, she feels some responsibility to war. Also, she feels like she has a duty to her people to protect them and every person who is hurt is one more person she's failed. She admits that this is a selfish way of thinking— she helps people for the sake of making herself feel better— but she works selflessly to help everyone.

Sakura is shown to have good faith in people. In the Revelations route, she chooses to believe in Corrin despite their inability to fully explain why they're fighting. In her support with Azura, she mentions knowing Azura to be kind and good despite horrible rumors about her. In her supports with Hana, it's revealed that she chose Hana to be her retainer despite disapproval from others only for Hana to become one of most loyal and reliable friends. In Birthright route, she puts her trust in an enemy mage she saves. Though the mage ultimately betrays them after revealing everything was an elaborate trick, the mage has a significant change of heart in the end and is killed when he tries to spare Corrin. Basically, despite her good faith, it's evident that it isn't perfect. It's most grievous in Conquest route when she trusts Corrin. Though her faith in Corrin is right, her decision results in her being taken prisoner as her people are slaughtered in front of her.

She is also incredibly aware of how much weaker she is compared to her siblings, and tends to become frustrated by her own perceived weakness. Still, one mustn’t mistake her timidness for weakness. Despite her abhorrence for violence and how easily intimidated she is, she rises up for her family and people. In Conquest route, she says she learned to fight after the death of her mother and though she hasn't been training for long, she stands her ground against the enemy army. In Birthright, she attacks an enemy mage that is manipulating Takumi, even if it means letting herself be captured.

It’s noted that despite being a princess, she isn’t one to hold her status over others normally. In her supports with Azama, it’s remarked that she never asks for any special treatment. Even when provoked, she remains passive, opting to deflect and avoid conflict when mistreated. However, she has her limits and ends up snapping her healing rod and at Azama for being disrespectful and harsh towards her. There are also times when she has been shown to use her status and rank to convince others to listen to her such as Birthright route when she tries (but fails) to convince the Wind Tribe to listen to them and in Revelations route when she convinces Saizo to not kill the avatar.

Most remarkable, however, is Sakura’s kindness and compassion for others. It’s remarked in the game that she is particularly empathic towards others, feeling for those who are hurt and suffering. In war meetings, she puts a heavy emphasis on how to prevent injuries and help the wounded to minimize casualties. Her empathy for others makes her an easy cryer and cries fairly regularly through out the story whenever people are hurt.

It’s noted that among the siblings, though she isn’t brave or strong like them, she has her own quiet strength. It's also mentioned by many others that she is well loved and adored by many people. She can afford to be meek because she can rely on her siblings and retainers to protect her but she refuses to stand back and let her loved ones be hurt.

She finds herself uncomfortable in plenty of situations but will push herself and put herself out there if she feels like it's necessary. In her supports with Leo, it's revealed that she avoids war council meetings because they depress her but after being pressed about it, she agrees to go and even speaks at it. In her supports with Takumi, she agonizes with him over going to an important banquet and they try to find a way to get out of it. In the end, they both end up going and having a good time, realizing they were worried for no reason. In supports with Xander, the player learns she's greatly intimidated by him but recognizing her meekness as a fault, she challengers herself to speak to the "most intimidating man in the army" to successfully overcome her anxieties. Despite her efforts to become braver and stronger, she continues to be incredibly soft spoken and polite.

Besides healing, it's vaguely hinted that she is gifted in a few other areas. In supports with Silas, she seems to have some familiarity with how curses work and how to break them. In supports with Saizo, it's very vaguely hinted that she might have a "divine gift" to sense when she is needed. In her other supports, you learn that she can play koto well and in supports with others, it is hinted that she is an entertaining writer. In other lines, she also mentions that she likes to cook and isn't too bad at it as long as they're traditional (Japanese) dishes.

She collects dolls and it's well known that she enjoys sweets. She is said to be the best healer in the army and the most calming to be around.

HISTORY
The timeline in Fates is pretty vague and the game has poor world building in general so I'm going to try to make the best of what there is to work with.

Sakura was born as the fourth and final child of King Sumeragi and Queen Ikona. Shortly after she was born, a woman named Mikoto appeared at the castle with a newborn baby (the avatar, Corrin). The King and Queen welcomed her into their castle. At some point, presumably not very long after Sakura's birth and Mikoto's arrival, Ikona passed away. Sumeragi would marry Mikoto and take in her child as his own. Again, when Sakura was a baby, Sumeragi heads to Cheve to negotiate the terms of the war between Hoshido and Nohr. He takes Corrin with him. Upon arrival, he learns the negotiation was a trap; Sumeragi is murdered protecting Corrin and Corrin is kidnapped to be raised by the Nohrian family. Thus, Sakura loses both of her birth parents and her step sibling before she can even remember them. Fortunately, she still had Queen Mikoto who raised Sakura and her siblings as her own, becoming the only mother Sakura has ever known.

In retaliation, Hoshido kidnaps a Nohrian princess named Azura. Despite the circumstances of her arrival in Hoshido, the Hoshidan family adopts Azura into their own family. Sakura would become close to Azura, loving her like another sister and seeing all of her good points even if others didn't.

Growing up, she would watch her family struggle with the loss of the sibling she'd never had a chance to know. All of them began to train to bring Corrin back home. At some point, when she's still very young, Sakura overhears several servants whispering about how the original target had been Sakura. Blaming herself for the death of her father and Corrin's kidnapping and thus, a large part of her family's grief, she withdrew from others, becoming the anxious person she is now. Obviously, at some point, this is cleared up and beyond this, Sakura grows up safe in Hoshido with her loving family and people.

Years later, Corrin returns to Hoshido. Knowing only their name, Sakura is still happy to meet them and welcomes them into their home. Everything seems to be going well until a cloaked figure appears on the street. Mikoto throws herself in front of Corrin to protect them and dies. Sakura tries to save Mikoto only to be held back for her own safety. Corrin, in their grief, transforms into a dragon and attempts to get revenge. Corrin attacks Azura, and Sakura tries to save her only to once again, be held back. Azura sings her magic song and Corrin regains their sanity. Afterwards, they realize Corrin's arrival in Hoshido was all part of a trap set by Nohr's king to kill Mikoto and thus disable her protective magical barrier over the kingdom that had kept them safe.

Shortly afterward, the Nohrian siblings arrive to rescue Corrin and Corrin must make a choice: To return to Nohr and fight Hoshido, stay in Hoshido and fight Nohr, or find another solution. Since I'm playing Sakura from the Revelations route, I'll focus on that one first and note the differences in the Birthright and Conquests route at the end.

REVELATIONS ROUTE Corrin chooses to find a way to unite both of their families. In shock, both families fight to keep Corrin. Corrin defeats both armies and flees. The Hoshidan family return home and prepare for the next phase of the war. Sakura is left behind as her siblings go to lead their respective armies. Corrin is branded a traitor to Hoshido and is attacked at Fort Jinya. One of the Hoshidan ninja, Saizo, tries to kill Corrin but Sakura appears at the last moment to save Corrin with his brother, Kaze. In Corrin's defense, she argues they are kind and hadn't killed a single Hoshidan soldier at the battle and that was proof they weren't a traitor. Sensing Corrin having a greater reason for everything, she refuses to back down and manages to convince the others to listen to Corrin. Corrin tells a vague story about a greater enemy and how they shouldn't be fighting each other. No one believes Corrin except for Sakura who not only believes in them but insists on going with them. With her mind made up, she leaves with Corrin. Her retainers, Subaki and Hana, follow.

As they travel together, Sakura proves to be a useful ally, especially as a healer which is something that comes up in the story. However, she takes a more secondary role compared to other characters in the story so her involvement drops in the plot. As the story progresses, the player learns that there is a third, forgotten kingdom rule by a dragon. The dragon, corrupted by wild instincts, is manipulating the war between the two countries and has possessed the King of Nohr to perpetuate the war. They also learn that Azura and Corrin are from this kingdom with their mothers being lovers of the dragon king before he fell into madness. The player and his army venture to this kingdom to stop the dragon and along the way, they run into Queen Mikoto who was brought back to life by the dragon. Corrupted by the dragon, Mikoto lures her children into a trap and attacks them. Ultimately defeated, Sakura confesses how much she misses her mother and cries when she dies in their arms for the last time.

Adding insult to injury, the Hoshidan siblings also encounter their father— a man that Sakura doesn't recognize or remember. Forced to fight him, he is also defeated and Sakura tries to heal him and cries when her spell doesn't work.

The army goes on to defeat the dragon and free their kingdoms from years of war. The oldest brothers in each family become king and Sakura can be seen with the rest of her siblings and the Nohrian family promising to be friends with each other and to create a brighter future.

BIRTHRIGHT ROUTE In this route, Corrin decides to fight alongside their birth family, choosing Hoshido over Nohr. Sakura rushes to defend Corrin along with her siblings from being attacked by Corrin's Nohrian family. After the battle, the siblings split up to prepare for the second phase of the war. Corrin goes to help Sakura first who is at Fort Jinya assisting with first aid efforts. They're attacked and Sakura strays behind to help the wounded but orders her retainers, Subaki and Hana, to help Corrin. After the battle, they hear that Sakura's brothers, Takumi and Ryoma, are missing. Corrin sets out to find them but Sakura insists on going. Corrin refuses at first but Sakura insists. Realizing that she's already lost her mother and might lose her brothers too, Corrin allows Sakura to come with them.

The army falls into a trap where they're manipulated by an illusion into attacking innocent people. Realizing what has happened and the consequences this can bring, Sakura tries to smooth things over using her status as a princess to help. The people are hesitant to believe her because they think she might be an illusion too but are clearly willing to listen if it really is Sakura. They go on to another battle where Sakura saves an enemy mage. The mage, seemingly touched by her kindness, helps them for a short time.

Eventually, the army finds Sakura's first brother, Takumi. Relieved, she goes to greet him only to have him shoot an arrow in their direction. Takumi, not in his right mind, attacks Corrin's army and Sakura cries and they fight to bring him back to his senses. After the spell on him is broken, she cries again. Takumi butts heads with the enemy mage Sakura saved and Sakura continues to vouch for him. The mage saves Takumi's life later on and everything appears to be going well. The mage ultimately ends up betraying them despite Sakura's defenses but in the mage's final moments, he is killed when he tries to spare Corrin's life.

Takumi contracts a deadly disease and at Sakura's advice, they change route to find medicine to save him. Learning there is still a traitor in their midst, they ultimately find out that the traitor is Takumi himself who was possessed in an earlier battle. Takumi captures Azura. When he is ordered to kill her to stop her from singing her purifying song, Sakura strikes the dark mage controlling him even if it means being captured herself. The mage goes to attack Sakura and Takumi, free from the spell, attacks the mage, setting Sakura free.

At the final battle, Sakura helps Corrin defeat King Garon. To defeat him for good, Azura sings her purifying song. Unknown to all but Corrin, the song has been slowly killing Azura every time she sings it. Azura sings for the last time, collapsing onto the ground, and turning to water.

Back at home, Ryoma has been crowned king and Sakura, though still mourning the loss of Azura, is reminded that their mother and Azura would want her to be happy.

CONQUEST ROUTE Corrin decides to side with their Nohrian family, turningg on Hoshido. Sakura, not understanding why, helps her siblings fight against Corrin. Corrin flees to Nohr and is put in charge of several missions that result in death and destruction. Corrin, knowing that their father is possessed, goes along with the missions with their end goal being to conquer Hoshido so King Garon can sit on Hoshido's throne which has magical properties and can "reveal truth."

While fighting against Hoshido, Corrin must fight each of their siblings, in particular, Takumi, who's mental state deteriorates with each battle. In the final battles, Sakura is the first sibling Corrin must fight. It is revealed that after the death of Mikoto, Sakura learned to use a bow and arrow so she could protect her loved ones. Her advisor, Yukimura, suggests she leave the castle for her own safety but she refuses to leave. Steeling herself, she vows to stay and fight to protect her home and people. She and her army are defeated by Corrin. Still believing in Corrin, she allows herself to be taken prisoner if provided her people are spared. Corrina and Xander agree only to have a rogue commander in their army start massacring the Hoshidan soldiers. Sakura, realizing what is happening, begins to scream and cry, begging to be set free so she can save her people. Corrin keeps her prisoner, understanding that their custody is the safest place for her and her retainers to be. Sakura is kept isolated from the others and refuses to eat or speak the entire time.

In the next battles, Hinoka is defeated but Corrin claims Hinoka was killed which allows her to escape. Facing agains Takumi again, he is enraged because he believes Hinoka is dead and has just learned Sakura is prisoner. When he is defeated, he refuses to listen to Corrin's reasoning, he jumps off a high wall. His body is never recovered. Ryoma also falls to Corrin but upon learning his sisters are alive and Corrin's true goals, Ryoma agrees to surrender. Corrin tries to save Ryoma but their father orders Corrin to kill Ryoma on the spot. Ryoma, understanding Corrin at last, kills himself. King Garon sits on the magic throne and is revealed to have been long dead and possessed. Corrin defeats their father and when all seems over, an arrow is fired at them. Corrin turns to see Takumi is still alive but possessed by the same entity that had been possessing Garon. In conversations with Takumi, it is revealed he had actually died much earlier in the story and had been possessed for some time. Apologizing to Corrin for his hatred, he asks to be saved. Corrin kills Takumi, letting his spirit rest at last.

At the end of the game, Hinoka is crowned queen and Sakura vows to support her and bring peace to their world.